Sunday’s episode of Oprah’s Next Chapter set a new ratings precedent for OWN.
Fast affiliate ratings give Winfrey’s interview with the late Whitney Houston‘s family, including daughter Bobbi Kristina, a whopping 3.5 million viewers over the course of the hour and a half broadcast.
By far the network’s most watched telecast ever — a Jan. Next Chapter with pastor Joel Osteen nabbed 1.6 million — the broadcast also earned a 3.1 rating in the network’s sought after women 25.54 demo.
The special also managed to build in every half hour, improving between 9:00 and 10:30 p.m. ET.
Competitive data and full cable reports won’t likely come through until Tuesday, but 3.5 million will likely put Oprah’s Next Chapter among the top 5 broadcasts.
The interview, announced on little more than a week’s notice, marks more good news for the network which had ratings challenges at its launch. OWN recently posted substantial year over year growth in the month of February, growing an average 12 percent in primetime and 29 percent for the total day.